Connecticut High School Football

High School Football news, analysis, commentary and features from the reporters of the Hearst Connecticut Media Group.

Rick Davis, former Danbury coach, dies after yearlong illness

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Rick Davis, a beloved coaching figure in Danbury and the FCIAC who once took the Hatters within yards of playing for a state championship, died Monday after a yearlong battle with cancer.

Davis, who coached Danbury from 2001-2008, died at his daughter’s home in Maryland, where he had been receiving treatment for pancreatic cancer at nearby John’s Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. He was diagnosed with the disease in January.

Davis took the Hatters to two FCIAC championship games in 2001 and 2003. Behind quarterback Glen Mourning, Davis’ 2003 team was literally on the doorstep of playing for the Class LL championship. But a dropped pass in the end zone with seconds remaining cost the Hatters a 18-13 loss to West Haven.

Davis’ teams never again reached those heights. The Hatters went 6-4 in 2004, but never finished above .500 over the next four seasons.

He resigned after the 2008 season with a record of 47-36-4 to spend time with his grandchildren.

“He was so much more than a football coach,” said Danbury coach Dan Donovan, who succeeded Davis in 2009. “He absolutely adored all the kids at Danbury High School. He cared for each and every one of them.

“He would never let winning and losing cloud his judgment. He would do anything and everything for every one of them, just like he would for his own family.”

Read Rich Gregory’s full story in the News-Times

On a personal note, I adored Davis. He was one of the first coaches I connected with outside the Connecticut Post region. He was a big fan of this space and always met me with smiles and enthusiasm. He was a tremendously good natured man and will be missed dearly.

Categories: Fairfield County, FCIAC
Sean Patrick Bowley

Leave a Reply

8 Responses

  1. Marce Petroccio says:

    Rick Davis was a great coach and a gentleman. More importantly he was a great person and mentor to many people. He will be sorely missed. Our heartfelt condolences go out to the Rick’s family and the Danbury football program as well as the community….Marce Petroccio

  2. Thanks for the sentiment, Coach P. He will be missed.

  3. Dave Lib says:

    Coach Davis was one of the nicest men you’ll ever want to meet. He always went out of his way to talk high school football with you when he was at another game.

  4. And he was ALWAYS at other games. Loved people and football.

  5. RAY BROWN says:

    DIDNT KNOW HIM–BUT PRAYERS GO OUT TO FAMILY.R.I.P.MR.DAVIS

  6. the ruler says:

    Years after he stepped down as coach,he would always run out on the field with the kids like he never left,dress for games and all. rip coach davis.

  7. jeb says:

    This man was such a gentleman and an all-around good guy who was great for athletics. He was a people person who always made you feel welcome. Danbury High School lost a treasure and the entire sports community lost a friend.

  8. Dave Brennan says:

    Our hearts go out to coach Davis’ family at this time. We will miss him as he was a true supporter of his beloved sport. Well wishes to his wife and family, mrs. Davis helped in delivery of my son at Danbury hospital. God bless you at this time…..

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